Internet Safety Tips for Kids in Illinois - The Chicago Family Law Blog

The Chicago Family Law Blog

Internet Safety Tips for Kids in Illinois

The Internet can offer a host of good things for kids, and a host of bad things for kids. The challenge facing parents is to funnel the good things over the world wide web to their kids, while ensuring that their children are not exposed to the predators and other salacious elements of the Internet.

Given the power of the Internet, protecting your children from the harmful elements may seem like a losing battle. And statistics may support this:

  • 71% of teens 13-17 received messages online from someone they didn’t know
  • 30% of teens 13-17 considered meeting someone they’ve only talked to online
  • 14% have actually had an encounter with someone they met online
  • 25% of youths 10-17 have been exposed to sexually explicit pictures online without seeking or expecting them
  • 20% of youths have received unwanted sexual solicitations online

However, there are steps every parent can take to minimize these harms:

  • communicate with your child and discuss the potential for online dangers
  • spend time with your child online and know what they are actually searching for
  • move computers out of children's bedrooms and place them in common areas
  • use software blocking controls or other parental controls

Additionally, you should be aware that the law is on your side. In Illinois, the state legislature has passed a series of laws to protect children online. For example, the Harassing and Obscene Communications Act makes it a misdemeanor to bully or harass a child online. And the Criminal Code makes it a felony to cyberstalk someone such as making threats or causing emotional distress.

The Internet offers a boundless amount of information. Unfortunately, some of that information is harmful to your children. So, teaching Internet safety tips for kids is vital in keeping your children safe.

Related Resources:

  • Find a Chicago Family Law Attorney (FindLaw)
  • Online Safety Tips for Kids (Illinois Attorney General)
  • Bullying (FindLaw)
  • Tyler Clementi's Suicide Revives Discussion Of Bullying (FindLaw's Chicago Personal Injury Law Blog)